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11 comments | Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Black gay men are incapable of being in long term monogamous relationships. If you believe that statement then you're not alone, but if you don't then you're probably just as upset as you were the last hundred times that you heard this fiction disguised as fact spoken aloud.

It seems that many SGL men that I have come in contact with whether online or in person are convinced that their sexuality will only afford them meaningless sexual encounters, random online hookups, and loneliness. The potential to be involved in a committed relationship doesn't seem like an option for some when you're black and gay, but embracing the fear that one will be alone for the rest of his life is a reality that I think too many of us easily accept.

Allow me to illustrate further. One of my readers, let's call him Roger (not his real name) began instant messaging me on Yahoo a couple of months ago with a dilemma. Roger is attractive, educated, employed, masculine, HIV negative and a single father of a beautiful adopted boy, who's been successful in every area in his life except dating . In a world where internet hook-up sites have replaced old fashioned human connections, the lies, trickery, fake profiles, grammatical errors, and diminished hopes of genuine connections on sites like Black Gay Chat and Adam 4 Adam are all too common.

This is a conversation we had last night word for word that prompted me to address a topic that I think many gay men are grappling with, the politics of dating and the reality of being alone.

Roger: "I feel like many black gay guys that I almost dated would rather I be HIV positive, than be a father...just thinking that floored me."

Darian: "Damn that's messed up."

Roger: "Its like when I tell a guy on-line I'm a single dad they get all freaked out..."

Roger: "And I never thought guys would have this reaction."

Darian: "Those are the guys that you want to run from anyway."

Roger: "Yeah, I know. But it sucks being alone, especially when I have women hitting me up all the time."

If I'd been paying more attention to that last line then what happened next wouldn't have surprised me as much. Enter the beautiful heterosexual female who's looking for a husband and a gay man who desperately wants to settle down.

Roger:"So she said she was looking for a husband and I mean she is FINE !"

Darian: "Are you attracted to women?"

Roger: "Like...if I was ever going to be with a woman she would have to be a Beyonce looking chick."

Darian: "Oh Roger !"

Roger: "Really. I could be with an average guy and be attracted, but I have no attraction at all to average looking chicks."

Darian: "I'm about to lose my mind over here!"

Roger: "I mean on a scale of gayness, I'm like a 9." But she is a doctor, professional, educated, great conversationalist."

Darian: "But you do know that she doesn't have a penis?"

Roger: "I know. That crossed my mind."

Darian: "Are you bisexual?"

Roger: "I have never had sex with a woman...ever. I have never deeply kissed a woman before either."

Darian:"Neither have I and that's probably because we're GAYYYYYYYYYY!"

Roger: "I never really had the desire to do so." I'm just going through it emotionally right now. I'm not confused at all regarding my sexuality."

Darian:"Why are you even considering dating this woman?"

Roger: "I'm just SO tired of the superficiality and selfishness that many gay black men exhibit."

Darian: "You've been meeting the wrong gay men."

Roger: "For years now."

Now I'm no Dear Abby or Carrie Bradshaw but I know what it feels like to be alone and how easy it is to invite the wrong people into your life just to fill a void . Trust me...I've been there.But I don't think the answer to Roger's problem is to ride off into the sunset with a beautiful female doctor whose ideal mate is a heterosexual male. But how do we keep Roger and other black gay men from making this mistake that ultimately affects more people than the person that made the poor decision?

How can we as black gay men find suitable mates who want to share their lives in a committed relationship with another person? Is this a priority for black gay men? Does gay=loneliness ? Are black gay men built to maintain long term relationships? Or is it just a white thing?

To be continued...


<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

No SGL man should ever be so discouraged that he considers dating a woman! But it happens. And usually to guys who continually make poor choices, continually get hurt, and eventually accumulate so much pain they can no longer deal with men at all. I think those who manage their love lives with care (by having the discipline to stay far away from inappropriate people) remain hopeful because they meet with much more success than those who don't.

November 06, 2007 11:35 PM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Hey Darian, thanks for sharing my struggle... You are an excellent writer!!

November 07, 2007 6:15 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

For "Roger". I feel your pain. I have been single for almost 13 years. I think mainly because I refuse to settle for less than I deserve. But I sometimes wonder if my expectations or "standards" are unrealistic. I love kids and always wanted to find a life time partner that wanted to one day adopt. I'm 38 years old and I started to really panic upon my birthday this year because I know 40 is close. I thought I would be in a long-term relationship by now. Reading your dialogue with Darian aka Darkie.......lol, He'll know who this is by me calling him that, I felt your pain.

I live in a city where quality black men are scarce. The ones that are about something are usually not interested in dating other blacks. Its crazy. I never been oppossed to dating any race. I was chatting with a white guy online. He tried to hookup with me but said he had a boyfriend; that was black. During our conversation, he told me that his boyfriend; who happens to be black was'nt attracted to other black men. Even he did'nt understand why his boyfriend felt this way.

A while ago Darian posted this post with this guy and his son. I think they were from New York City. I was like how I would love to have a family.

I had brunch with a couple of my female friends last weekend. I asked two of the women that happen to be mother, how they can be so selfless and how the instinct occurs to take care of someone other than themselves. I've alway wanted kids but I was so afraid I would fail. You see I've only had to take care of myself.

I really admire people who can take care of someone other than themselves, especially kids because they required alot of you. Ok, I'm going to end this post because I'll be writing for days.

Well...... maybe we'll chat one day.


November 07, 2007 7:40 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I think the great challenge is in finding people to date and pursue relationships with. If the online sites are all about sex, and clubs and bars are all about having the right looks to get someone's attention, where else can you find an intelligent, successful, diversely interesting, ambitious, relationship-oriented Black gay man interested in dating another Black gay man?

There are no shortage of parties and social spaces where large groups of men are thrown together, but finding ones where there are men who share common interests, values and goals is much rarer.

That old saying, "You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find a prince," may be true, but in the process you wind up with worts on your lips.

November 07, 2007 10:28 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

You are not dear Abby but maybe you ought to be (or try to be). This is a big problem for many black gay men. I want you to tackle this problem in your writing more frequently.

November 08, 2007 9:23 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I can understand if you don't want to be Dear Abby, but why not Dan Savage. He is cool.

November 08, 2007 9:27 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Well, Darian, part of the problem as I see it is that few of my gay friends rarely engage in old fashion social networking. For example, you could have said, " Hey Roger! My friend Daryl is smart, well educated, attractive, funny, and gainfully employed as a college professor...oh, and did I mention that he has his own everything!" Seriously, we should do more match making, and less cock blocking!

November 08, 2007 3:28 PM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I agree with Daryl.... But maybe Darian is storing him up just incase Trey does'nt work out.......lol


November 08, 2007 11:31 PM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

To Merz
Saids to me like your hating could it be because your alone and have no life & no man? Maybe if you would stay out of other peoples business and focus on dealing with your issues you'd be able to get out and find a man of your own. Stop using this site as a dating tool(this is not matchmakers.com we didnt need ur stats) it makes u sound DESPARATE. Sorry to be the one to tell u this but if u have been single for 13 years i think its a little bit more than expections or "standards" being unrealistics be real with ur self ITS YOU!!!! P.S. Why would u speak something like "Darian is storing him up just incase Trey does'nt work out.......lol" whether u where joking or not u of all people (Being ALONE for 13 YEARS) should know better. If anything Darian DESERVES nothing but positive vibes being sent to him not negative vibes from a lonely,bitter, and jealous late person!

November 11, 2007 8:19 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

CORRECTION: In the comment above it suppose to read "Sounds to me like ur hating" not "Said to me like ur hating"

November 11, 2007 8:24 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

This was an interesting piece. It makes me want to ask the question, are the number of men in failed relationships any different for heterosexual men then it is for gay men? Gay men get a bad rap for jumping in and out of one meaningless relationship after another. Are the statistics really any different for straight men? When I look at the straight men that I know personally, many of them seem to live the 'playa' personae with no apparent desire for a commitment.

I do not believe that this is restricted to gay men. Maybe it's more about being a man in general moreso than it is about gay men.

November 19, 2007 12:35 PM


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